EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

10.14.13

Tim Berners-Lee is Wrong, DRM in HTML is a Very Big Deal

Posted in DRM at 9:29 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Time to fork HTML?

Tim Berners-Lee by John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
Source: Original from John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, modified by Techrights

Summary: The Web’s founder, Tim Berners-Lee, now actively defends the copyright cartel, only to find loud opposition even from his biggest and more prominent fans

Tim Berners-Lee is quickly losing credibility and he has nobody else to blame. He actively echoes Hollywood talking points or at least Hollywood’s apologists, to whom a copyright monopoly or cartel is perfectly acceptable if not essential.

“It’s that time of the year again,” writes iopkh.” Time to remind the media that there are no such things as Nobel prizes in astrology, professional wrestling or economics.” Here is Cory Doctorow speaking out his mind again, urging Mozilla to tackle DRM like it already tackles Flash, namely:

Mozilla’s Shumway project, an attempt to create a replacement Flash plug-in that uses HTML5, might ever so slightly placate those barracking for the latter. Previously Shumway has only been available as a separate extension, but it recently made its way into Firefox’s nightly builds, hinting at the prospect of mainline inclusion somewhere down the line.

Glyn Moody, a vocal fan of Tim Berners-Lee, has become quite a notable opposer of his stance of DRM in HTML5. He raises some very good points:

Tim Berners-Lee on Why HTML5 “Needs” DRM

[...]

That’s an extremely odd comment, since it divides up the online world up into active creators and passive consumers. That’s precisely the framing that the copyright industry adopts in an attempt to minimise the rights of Internet users, and to belittle their role.

[...]

Putting users first is great, but this sets up a false dichotomy between those who “like to watch big-budget movies at home” and those who want an open Web, as if the former must lose if the latter win. But it’s ridiculous to suggest that companies like Netflix will stop streaming video over the Internet if the Web does not include DRM. It may do it with proprietary Web plugins, or it might even insist that people use standalone code, but that’s not a problem – it is exactly how it’s been done in the past.

Moreover, the open Web will exist and thrive even if some people choose to use proprietary code, just as open source thrives despite the existence of some closed-source applications. The only people who might conceivably lose out if DRM isn’t included in HTML is the W3C, who won’t be able to control exactly how those non-Web parts operate. But that’s true now, anyway, and I can’t believe that the W3C is so power crazed that it wants to sacrifice the open Web solely to extend its empire a little further.

The longer this goes on for, the worse Tim Berners-Lee’s reputation will get. He hopefully understands this by now. The NSA already threatens forking of the Web. Tim Berners-Lee might do the same with his stance. If not a fork, then an alternative might be put forth. There were several Web-like prototypes preceding Tim Berners-Lee’s. Although some were better, they never quite caught on. Tim Berners-Lee and the W3C may feel like they have no competition, so they think that they can get away with DRM.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

7 Comments

  1. Michael said,

    October 15, 2013 at 11:03 pm

    Gravatar

    So what is your solution? How do individuals and companies protect their IP?

    Why not have a built in standard and not a bunch of plugins people need to download?

    XFaCE Reply:

    >Why not have a built in standard and not a bunch of plugins people need to download?

    Indeed, and while we’re at it, why not breed unicrons and fairies for everyone.

    Hey Michael, you realize that this “plugin-free” solution still depends on what are essentially proprietary plugins (“Content Decryption Modules”) right? Please explain to me how this solves the problems of relying on proprietary extensions.

    >So what is your solution? How do individuals and companies protect their IP?

    Well that depends. What exactly are we protecting? Protecting from whom? What is IP in a practical sense? What about studies that show positive effects from file sharing that’s violating “protection” as you put it? Why do we need law-based and tech-based solutions? Why are tech-based solutions protected under law? What is the evidence of a broad negative effect?

    But maybe I’m too nuanced here. I should instead follow your example and use loaded questions to paint the world in black and white. “How do good honest citizens protect themselves from that stupid idiot troll Michael harassing them on the Internet?” See, I can do it too.

    Michael Reply:

    Why not have a built in standard and not a bunch of plugins people need to download?

    Indeed, and while we’re at it, why not breed unicrons and fairies for everyone.

    Do you think standards are impossible to develop? If not I do not see your point?

    Hey Michael, you realize that this “plugin-free” solution still depends on what are essentially proprietary plugins (“Content Decryption Modules”) right? Please explain to me how this solves the problems of relying on proprietary extensions.

    HTML and CSS are standardized (largely – there are, of course, browser-specific extensions). JPGs and GIFs and PNGs allow for standardized image types to be views in any browser. TCP-IP is standardized. Many other things are to allow for the Internet and the Web to even exist as they do. It makes sense to also standardize on a set of multi-media and security features. Why not continue the advancement that has been happening in the tech industry? Of course, as newer technologies come about the standards will get better – just as PNGs were not that common a decade ago but now are.

    So what is your solution? How do individuals and companies protect their IP?

    Well that depends. What exactly are we protecting? Protecting from whom? What is IP in a practical sense? What about studies that show positive effects from file sharing that’s violating “protection” as you put it? Why do we need law-based and tech-based solutions? Why are tech-based solutions protected under law? What is the evidence of a broad negative effect?

    We are not talking about the effect of people violating IP – we are talking about people’s choice to protect their own IP. Maybe you think it is a bad idea to do so. Fine. For that matter, I produce educational videos and sell them – I do not use any DRM scheme with the DVDs I sell. I even tell people how to make copies to their hard drive or other media. But this is my *choice*. I believe in choice and freedom. I am very much against Stallman and the like who want (at least as an ideal) to eliminate freedom and choice and to force all people to do as I do with their IP.

    But maybe I’m too nuanced here. I should instead follow your example and use loaded questions to paint the world in black and white. “How do good honest citizens protect themselves from that stupid idiot troll Michael harassing them on the Internet?” See, I can do it too.

    My question is a simple one: if you do not like a built in standard what do you suggest instead? Requiring people to download proprietary solutions? I do not think that should be eliminated, but I think it would make things better for technology standards to continue to advance. Does not mean web developers should be forced to use these standards – after all, I *can* have all the images on my site be in PSD format if I *want*, but it sure makes it a lot easier for developers and users if we are have common standards to follow. Why this offends you so much is anyone’s guess. I sincerely hope that if you chose to respond you can do so without name calling and other immature acts.

    XFaCE Reply:

    Or to use another example, “How do we prevent the discrimination of Christianity from gay marriage legalization?”

    Michael Reply:

    What discrimination? I do not follow what you are saying. Is someone being forced into a gay marriage? If they are then I would agree it is wrong. It sounds, however, like you are suggesting giving others freedom and choice is somehow an offensive thing to you.

    XFaCE Reply:

    I was giving a further example of a loaded question that assumes a reality, like you did in the previous post. You know, the whole “using loaded questions to paint the world in black and white.” The fact you miss that this was an example of such a question and not a statement of opinion is really reflective of your strawmaning.

    Michael Reply:

    What loaded question?

    I am merely noting that whining about standards without having a good alternative is not good. Roy and those who are against standards should come up with a *solution* (even if just in idea form – I am not saying they must implement it), not just whine about the solutions are others are coming up with.

    I am pushing for freedom and for people to go with any shade of gray they want. I am fighting against the idea that any ideas but mine must be bad. That is what Stallman pushes and what Roy repeats – use their ideas or it is immoral. No: Stallman’s GPL is a great license, but it should be a *choice*. People should be free to protect their own property in multiple ways.

    Having standards for HTML and CSS and image formats and video formats and audio formats and networking formats and IP protection all make sense (and many have already been implemented), but people should not be forced to use them and there should be freedom to improve on them and offer updated ideas that can become new standards. Nothing black and white about that at all.

    Calling this “black and white” thinking without being able to explain how or why merely shows a lack of understanding on your part. You seem to have a strong desire to disagree but no real content to use with your disagreement. Add to that your silly insults, accusations, and engagement in name calling only serves to make you look lost and immature. Please try to raise the level of your discourse.

    Thank you.

What Else is New


  1. Links 23/8/2016: GNOME 3.22 Beta, Android 7.0 Nougat

    Links for the day



  2. The Linux Foundation Gives Microsoft (Paid-for) Keynote Position While Microsoft Extorts (With Patents) Lenovo and Motorola Over Linux Use

    This morning's reminder that Nadella is just another Ballmer (with a different face); Motorola and Lenovo surrender to Microsoft's patent demands and will soon put Microsoft spyware/malware on their Linux-powered products to avert costly legal battles



  3. Not Just President Battistelli: EPO Vice-Presidents Are Still Intentionally Misrepresenting EPO Staff

    Evidence serving to show that EPO Vice-Presidents are still intentionally misrepresenting EPO staff representatives and misleading everyone in order to defend Battistelli



  4. Battistelli the Liar Causes a Climate of Confrontation in French Politics, Lies About Patent Quality (Among Many Other Things)

    Battistelli's lies are coming under increased scrutiny inside and outside the European Patent Office (EPO), where patent quality has been abandoned in order to artificially elevate figures



  5. The Collapse of Software Patents and Patent Law Firms Trying to “Overcome” Alice

    The United States continues its gradual crackdown on software patents (which are viewed as abstract and thus unpatentable), whereas in Europe things are murkier than ever



  6. Apple's Patent Wars Against Android/Linux Make Patent Trolls Stronger

    Apple's insistence that designs should be patentable could prove to be collectively expensive, as patent trolls would then use a possible SCOTUS nod to launch litigation campaigns



  7. Links 22/8/2016: Linux 4.8 RC3, Linux Mint 18 “Sarah” KDE Beta

    Links for the day



  8. Links 21/8/2016: Apple and Microsoft Down, Systemd Spreading to Mount

    Links for the day



  9. Links 20/8/2016: Android Domination, FSFE summit 2016

    Links for the day



  10. Patents Roundup: Trolls Dominate Litigation, PTAB Crushes Patents, Patent Box Regime Persists, and OIN Explains Itself

    Another roundup of patent news from around the Web with special focus on software patenting



  11. The Cost/Toll of the 'New' EPO and Where All That Money Goes or Comes From

    The European Patent Office has become a servant of the rich and powerful (including large foreign corporations) and even its own employees now pay the price associated with misguided new policies (or 'reforms' as Battistelli habitually refers to these)



  12. Links 19/8/2016: Linux Mint With KDE, Linux Foundation's PNDA

    Links for the day



  13. The End of an Era at the USPTO as Battistelli-Like (EPO) Granting Policies Are Over

    The United States is seeing the potency of patents -- especially software patents (which make up much of the country's troll cases) -- challenged by courts and by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB)



  14. Battistelli's European Patent Office Goes to the United States to Speak About the UPC and Software Patents

    The European Patent Office is showing its utter contempt -- not just disregard -- for the very fundamental rules that put it in its place and brought it into existence



  15. Turkey Subjected to the European Patent Convention (EPC) But Benoît Battistelli is Not?

    The ‘constitutional crisis’ at the European Patent Office in the context of Turkey, which has signed "the EPC and as such recognises the competence and the decisions of the institutions which have been introduced in the convention."



  16. Links 18/8/2016: EFF Slams Vista 10, Linux Foundation Makes PNDA

    Links for the day



  17. Links 17/8/2016: GNOME and Debian Anniversaries

    Links for the day



  18. Personal Audio LLC and Patent Troll Jim Logan Demonstrate the Harms of Software Patents and Why They Must Never Spread to Europe

    Jim Logan of Personal Audio (a notorious Texas-based patent troll) is still fighting with his bogus patent, having already caused enormous damage with a single software patent that should never have been granted in the first place (due to prior art, not just Alice)



  19. The Patent Microcosm Hopes That the Originators of Software Patents Will Undermine the Patent Trial and Appeal Board

    Now that the actions of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB), which have been consistently upheld by the CAFC in precedential decisions, are suddenly being questioned the patent microcosm gets all giddy and tries to undermine PTAB (again)



  20. That Time When the Administrative Council Helped Battistelli Crush Oversight (Audit Committee) and What ILO Said About It a Month Ago

    Things are becoming ever more troublesome at the EPO as the Administrative Council enjoys inaction from the International Labour Organization (ILO), in spite of its role in destroying much-needed oversight at the behest of Battistelli



  21. The EPO's Administrative Council Keeps Postponing Debate About Grounds for Firing the President

    A recollection of events prior to the latest Administrative Council meeting, where Benoît Battistelli's failings and accountability for failing to correct them never even came up



  22. A Surge of Staff Complaints About the European Patent Office Drowns the System, Disservice to Justice Noted

    Self-explanatory graphs about the state of the justice [sic] system which is prejudiced towards/against EPO workers, based on internal reports



  23. Links 16/8/2016: White House Urged by EFF on FOSS, Go 1.7 Released

    Links for the day



  24. Links 15/8/2016: Linux 4.8 RC2, Glimpses at OpenMandriva Lx 3.0

    Links for the day



  25. Clawing Back the Staff Benefits at the European Patent Office (EPO)

    Staff of the EPO is leaving (or retiring) in droves as abusive management continues to be the norm and staff benefits are being taken away or gradually revoked



  26. The Patent Microcosm is Panicking and Spinning Alice/§ 101 Because US Software Patents Are Still Dying

    A look at recent developments in the software patents scene in the United States, with increased focus on (or fear of) the Patent Trial and Appeal Board



  27. 21,000 Posts in Techrights in Less Than a Decade

    This post is the 21,000th post and the next one will make it more than twenty-one thousand posts in total. We are turning 10 in November.



  28. Patent Microcosm Shuts Out the Poor: Unified Patent Court (UPC) Promotion by Practising Law Institute (PLI) Only for the Wealthy

    The people who are profiting from patent feuds, disputes, lawsuits etc. are still trying to muscle their will into European law and they keep the general public out of it by locking down (or pricing out of reach) their meetings where they influence/lobby decision-making officials



  29. The United States Has a Growing Patent Trolls Epidemic as Very High Proportion of Lawsuits Filed by Them

    A look at the high proportion of patent lawsuits that are filed by entities that make nothing at all and thus serve no role whatsoever in innovation



  30. Pushers of Software Patents Outside the United States (Which is Belatedly Squashing These Patents)

    How patent law firms are distorting the debate about software patents in hope of attracting business from gullible people who misunderstand the harsh (and worsening) reality of software patenting


CoPilotCo

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts